Bayelsa traders bemoan continued closure of market
Bayelsa auto spare parts traders have lamented the continued closure of the Mechanic Village at Tombia, Yenagoa Local Government area of the state capital.
The traders claimed that the Village has been closed for three weeks by the state government through the Ministry of Trade and Investment. The Chairman, Auto Spare Parts Association, Bayelsa State chapter, Okoli Sunday, said the village was closed down on December 18, 2017 over allegations of non-payment of rent by traders.
Okoli who countered the claim, noted that traders had paid through the Nigerian Automobile Technicians Association, which is in charge of the shops. He urged the government to direct their searchlight to NATA and some ministry collaborators, who were in a better position to explain what went wrong.
Okoli also explained that out of 484 shops in the village, only 78 were being accounted for while the remaining ones went into the private pockets of the alleged collaborators. He noted that the closure of the village had inflicted untold hardship on the traders, calling on the state government to consider their plights, reopen the village and create room for dialogue.
Also speaking on the matter, President of Ohanaeze Youth Council, Bayelsa State chapter, Chinedu Arthur-Ugwa and the Chairman, Igbo Traders Association, Paul Odurukwe, described the situation as worrisome.
They appealed to the state government to wade in immediately and investigate the claims of the auto spare parts traders, dominated by Igbos, lamenting that the situation rendered the traders stranded during the Yuletide, as they could not cater for their families.
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